Indian shuttler PV Sindhu has created history by winning the gold medal in BWF World Championships.
World no. 5 PV Sindhu became the first Indian to win a gold in BWF World Championships. She comprehensively defeated world no. 3 Nozomi Okuhara of Japan on Sunday to win her first gold at the BWF World Championships.
The India star-shuttler made an impressive start to the match with incessant attacking and extremely positive badminton, mixed with a lot of variety and solid defense and raced to an 11-2 lead in the first set, when Okuhara looked in some discomfort, seemingly with a niggle in the neck and had a word with her coach.
Sindhu won the final by 21-7 21-7, that lasted just 38 minutes.
For the last two years, Sindhu had reached the World Championship finals only for Okuhara (2017) and Carolina Marin (2018) to prevent her from crossing the final hurdle. But this time PV Sindhu was bang on. She defeated Okuhara very dominatingly.
This is Sindhu’s fifth World Championships medal. She now holds the record for the highest no of World Championships medal won by a woman singles player, along with former Olympics and world champion Zhang Ning of China.
Sindhu has also won an Olympic silver in 2016 Rio Games, a silver at Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, an Asian Games silver at Jakarta and the BWF World Tour Finals last year.
Sindhu was quoted as saying by the Badminton World Federation’s (BWF) official website after her crushing win over Okuhara: “This is my answer to the people who have asked me questions over and over. I just wanted to answer with my racket and with this win – that’s all.
I felt really bad after the first World Championships final and last year I was angry, I was sad. I went through all my emotions, asking ‘Sindhu, why can’t you get this one match?’ but today came and I told myself to play my game and not worry – and it worked out.”
Sindhu further said: “Everybody was wanting this win from me. After the Rio Olympics silver medal, the expectations from me is really high. Every time I go to a tournament, everyone expects me to win gold. After a year I also thought what should I do for it and instead of thinking about others, I thought maybe I should just play for myself and give my 100 percent and automatically I win because thinking about others would put extra pressure on me.”
On Sunday as she moved to the top of the podium and stood there with the gold medal around her neck, beaming with pride. But as the national anthem played and the Indian flag rose the highest, Sindhu stood singing along with moist eyes, all the emotions clearly visible on her face.
Sindhu wrote on Instagram: “I could not hold back my tears when I saw the Indian flag and heard the National anthem playing. Words can’t express my feelings about yesterday’s win at the World Championship. Had been preparing for it for so long. Finally, the wait ended.”
She concluded the post saying: “It wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my parents, my coaches (Gopi sir and Ms Kim) and my trainer (Mr Srikanth Verma). And most importantly, I would like to thank my sponsors and all my fans who have supported me all along. FINALLY WORLD CHAMPION 2019.”
The BAI announced a cash reward of Rs 20 lakh for PV Sindhu following her historic win at the World Championships in Basel on Sunday.
PV Sindhu now hopes to win the Olympic crown in Tokyo 2020. She said: “People are already asking ‘Sindhu, what about gold in Tokyo 2020?’.
Olympics is not so far but right now it is step-by-step for me. I know the Olympic qualification is going so I hope I do well, but right now I just want to enjoy it and don’t want to think anything else.
Badminton is my passion and I feel that I can win more titles.”
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